A few years before we spoke, Ellen Bard would have introduced herself as a management consultant working in London. Now she’s a digital nomad, based in Thailand.
- She’s a freelance consultant, specifically a chartered occupational psychologist (aka, a work psychologist).
- She has a personal development website, writing primarily about self-compassion/self-care.
- She’s a novelist, who writes paranormal romance.
How did this all come to be? You’ll have to listen to find out!
I will say it involves writing 100,000 words during NaNoWriMo — despite being a self-proclaimed perfectionist.
There’s a whole lot of wisdom in Ellen’s side of our conversation that I think anyone who’s ever struggled with perfectionism can benefit from.
We started off talking about the importance of self-knowledge. As Ellen put it:
“The more you can understand yourself and what demotivates or motivates you, what drives you or disengages you, the more you can use that knowledge and information to set up your lifestyle, your work, your structure, whatever it is, to facilitate better creativity.”
Sound familiar? This is exactly my Golden Formula: Self-awareness + self-compassion = the key to everything good.
But that was just the beginning of a rich conversation, in which we discussed, among other things:
- Ellen’s own journey toward greater self-care and self-compassion, as a result of a car accident over a decade ago.
- Ellen’s morning ritual (and how it changes when she travels (she took 86 individual flights over the course of the previous year, so she travels a lot)
- Conscious use of time as a key to get stuff done.
- How tightly intertwined the body and mind are.
- Ellen’s story of the power of a smile.
“I think every act, pretty much, can be creative.” -Ellen
“Creativity is what humans do.” -Melissa
Have a listen and let me know your biggest takeaway!
Find Ellen at:
I read a lot of novels. When a friend writes a novel, though, it always causes me anxiety, because I know I’ll be expected to read it.
And really, a lot more people think they’re good writers than actually are good writers.
So when my friend Lisa told me she was finally publishing her novel, on the one hand I was thrilled for her.
On the other hand, I broke out in hives, because now I was going to have to read her book and then either tell her what I really thought of it, or lie, or avoid her — none of which seemed like good options.
But as it happens I needn’t have worried, because it turns out Lisa is a brilliant writer, and her first published novel is stunning.
As I wrote in my Amazon review:
Many authors can write page turners. Many can make me laugh or cry. Fewer can weave prose that makes my heart sing. Fewer still can craft a story so layered and nuanced that it taps me right to the core, and leaves me buzzing. In A Strange Companion, Lisa Manterfield has managed to do all of the above.
That’s why A Strange Companion is this week’s Something Cool. This book is so good, I want everyone to know about.
Go buy it. Go get it out of the library if you can find it there.
Read it. (Keep a box of tissues handy.) Share it with friends.
This is is a book that will stick with you. If you’ve been through a loss, or if you’re going through a loss right now, or if you know someone who is going through a loss, it may help you or them navigate it.
And if you’ve ever been through a loss (and who hasn’t) it will tug at your heartstrings and expand your soul.
Thanks for Listening!
Thanks so much for joining me this week. Have some feedback you’d like to share? Leave a note in the comment section below!
If you enjoyed this episode, please share it using the social media buttons you see at the bottom of the post.
Also, please leave an honest review for Live Creative Now on Tunes!
If you’d also like your voice to be heard on the show, leave your question as a voice message right here.
And finally, don’t forget to subscribe to the show on iTunes to get automatic updates.
Now go get creating!
PS — Pssst! Know someone who might benefit from seeing this today? Pass it on!